“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. Do not be discouraged, For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
You might be thinking - - yes, of course I’m comfortable speaking about Jesus and God - - OR - - you may feel restricted, and you are only comfortable speaking about your religious beliefs:
Believe in your faith enough to stand up for God and Jesus when it counts the most
In this blog post you will learn:
#1: OUR RIGHTS:
It will be helpful to understand how God’s involvement in our lives has evolved overtime in our legal system and in our culture. This will empower us to realize the importance and responsibility we have to share God’s word with others.
Society has worked hard to suppress God in our lives.
You may be thinking all of this logically makes sense. After all, you don’t want to push your belief on anyone. If someone doesn’t believe in the bible, how can they swear on it to tell the truth? How can we ask a child to say “One nation under God” when we don’t want to force God on them?
Our society praises this kind of religious tolerance, or lack thereof. What this is saying is either one of two things:
It is important now more than ever to understand that we as Christians have the freedom to speak boldly and be assured in our faith through compassion, patience and understanding.
God doesn’t force himself on anyone. God wants you to come to him on your own, and he will use people, places and his word to help guide you towards his truth.
If you are someone who believes in God and Jesus, you are part of God’s plan to help those around you to find the truth you were able to uncover.
A human being’s rights to publicly express their faith or religious belief is a fundamental understanding that will empower you to be comfortable to speak up when it’s needed.
Let’s understand the intent of Separation of Church and State.
It does not mean “hide your faith outside of your Church, or place of worship”.
It means you have a right to express yourself freely through the guarantees of religious liberty that Thomas Jefferson fought for us all to have in the first amendment. Unfortunately, our society has mis-interpreted this to mean you should not mix religious activities with public or state activities.
The intent of the First Amendment of the Constitution is meant to help “reinforce the legal right of a free people to freely live their faith, even in public; without fear of government coercion. Free exercise means you may have faith and you may live it. The Separation of church and state doesn’t shut down our debates over religion in the public square; it guarantees the freedom for us to respectfully have those debates...Faith is worth talking about in many places in American culture” - - Thomas Jefferson said that The Constitution would “restore to man all his natural rights”. Intolerance of another person’s faith is a personal choice, not a legal requirement.” - Time.com, The real meaning of the Separation of Church and State.
One thing is certain - - as Christians, we have a responsibility to educate the importance of having God in our lives.
“Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms'' - Peter 4:10.
It is in our service that all will see God’s grace in action as we demonstrate our faith.
So now that you have a comfort level about expressing your belief of God and Jesus freely through our constitutional rights, let’s talk about how important this is.
#2: IMPORTANCE OF GOD IN OUR LIVES
Here is an example of how important it is to have God in our lives. According to a recent Pew Research Study from Spring 2019 Global Attitudes Survey Q30 - -
Countries with higher purchasing power are less likely to tie belief in God to morality.
Those with higher income are also less likely to see belief in God as necessary.
This shows us how money separates us even further from God. When we put value on MONEY and THINGS, we lose sight of the importance of how God can positively shape our morals and values. “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” 1 Timonthy 6:10
Whereas, if we put people before things, we will have a higher expectation of our morals, shaped by God’s guidance for us:
“a new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have
loved you, so also you must love one another.” John 13:34
Now that we understand the importance of God in our lives, let’s review when the right time and place is to speak about God and Jesus. “If God is for us, who could be against us.” Romans 8:31
#3: When is the right time and place to speak about God and Jesus?
To understand the right time and place, we will start by asking a few questions detailed below. These questions are meant to help you learn about your current decision making.
The way you answer them today, may not be how you act in the situation. Once you learn more about yourself from these questions. Remember how you may WANT to answer, versus what you may ACTUALLY do. Take this to heart, and know how much you can truly make a difference in someone's life - - especially when you have God on your side to help guide you and direct your steps.
Statistics are included under each question to give you an idea of the probability you may witness the situation. This will show the significant likelihood of occurrence for each scenario, which offers multiple moments to not only help someone else, but build your character as a warrior for God.
It’s not to say that you are to talk about your belief in Jesus and God all the time, everyday with everybody - it’s to say that in those specific moments of conflict are moments of opportunity. An opportunity to represent God’s love in this world. God puts you in those moments to test your faith. The ones that walk away are the ones that fail.
Choose to stand strong in your faith, just as you choose to know God and Jesus. Be the warrior he chose you to be, through grace, compassion and understanding, knowing that God and Jesus are always with you.
While it is not our battle to fight, it is our responsibility to defend and live the word. As it says in Ephesians 6:10-6:20, we need to put on the full armor of God when we have these healthy debates - - “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
Now that you have your armour on, and you are ready to share God’s word, how do you do it?
#4: How to defend God’s word in the world we live in today
Your courage to speak about God’s love through his word, helps to bring God’s word to life. "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
We have to understand God’s word in order to speak about it with others, and help to change people’s hearts.
The way you express God’s word can help to be a voice of truth, justice and hope - it can resuscitate a life and help the heart to beat again.
“And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind
to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” Timothy 2:24-26
We are all connected to God and Jesus through our spirit. Everyone, from Christians, to Muslims, to Jews, to Republicans or Democrats, the religion or political belief is an added layer to the spirit that we all have.
So when we speak of Jesus or of God, we all feel something:
Speaking about it can help to bring understanding to the confused, and clarity to those that are uncomfortable or angry. God has given us the tools we need right in the bible to chip away at the chains that shackle most.
As the Lord says in Jeremiah 23:29: - - “Is not My word like fire?” declares the Lord, “and like a hammer which shatters a rock?” The word is our sword and our light, that breaks the lies and brings peace where there is darkness. So lean on the word whenever you need to.
Some people will be reminded of God’s love. They will be resuscitated and start to speak about it to others. And some may take longer to understand. That’s where our patience and understanding comes in, and we continue our good works.
God’s word is the bridge, the translator, and the bandage that heals to bring us back together again with our father - - Back to the Garden of Eden (Zion), to our relationship with God, through his son Jesus.
What was started in the beginning will come back again in the end, as initially intended. And through the journey, we can each help one another to get there.
Do you agree?